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Well May We Say “Advance Australia Fair” 24 June, 2010

Posted by paralleldivergence in elections, Internet, My Thoughts, Politics, voting.
Tags: , , , , ,

…because NOTHING will advance Julia Gillard. As the Australian Labor Party prepares to vote in the country’s first ever female prime minister, I’m waiting for Kevin Rudd to come out with a quotation for the history books, but I doubt he’ll be echoing Gough Whitlam’s infamous and nonsensical quote from his dismissal in 1975.

Before the mainstream media and television stations caught on that something was going down in Canberra last night, the Twittersphere was already abuzz with speculation that Kevin Rudd may not last the evening. As Parliament House insiders began tweeting that Julia Gillard, the current Deputy PM and John Faulkner, the Defence Minister and Labor “elder-statesman” had gone into Rudd’s office for a closed-door meeting. Soon other Ministers had joined in the impromptu meeting and speculation was rife.

Once twits had settled on the hashtag #spill, it was on for one and all. Seconds had passed and fifty updates had gone through. Keeping up with the challenge was a challenge.  Twitter had already played a major role in the U.S. election, but this was Australia’s first real go at the population actively discussing our future leadership online in real-time. But unlike the dry, emotional and serious commentary that surrounded the U.S. election, Australia’s effort was far more jovial, keeping people glued to the #spill stream for many hours.

From nowhere appeared a new Twitter account, @KevinRuddExPM – a play on Kevin07’s official @KevinRuddPM account. This Kevin was more outwardly bitter than the real Kevin and provided a refreshing array of tweets that you’d think might actually reflect the (ex)PM’s persona – including this one that tied in the week’s other big story from the World Cup:

“Calling Tim Cahill and Harry Kewell to ask them for some advice on handling a send off…”

Of course, I got my boot in via Twitter as well:

“Hey Ban Ki-moon! You’d better watch your back. Kevin’s available early.”

Julia Gillard’s first press conference as PM: “Look at mooee, look at mooee, look at mooee.”

What were you doing when Rudd was booted? Oh yeah. Tweeting.

Well done Julia Gillard – Australia’s first female Prime Minister.

Feel free to share some of your favourite #spill tweets in the comments.



1. kmcg2375 - 24 June, 2010

I also love the fun games that evolve when these big issues consume our Twittention. The film and song lyric puns are always a winner:

RT @renailemay: Dr StrangeRudd: Or how I learned to stop worrying and love the spill #spillmovies

Make way for the P.M.G! ‘Love me or hate me, that is the question. If you love me then: thank you! If you hate me then…’ #spillyrics

I am saddened by the way politics works sometimes…so bitchy. Having said that, I am uber proud today to be an Australian. Vive la femme!

paralleldivergence - 24 June, 2010

Thanks Kelly.

Kevin Rudd will be fine. Therese is a recruitment specialist. #spill

2. Jason D - 24 June, 2010

Love the images at the top. Just saw a couple more great tweets by @KevinRuddExPM:

I just got a text from Tony: “HaHa yOu LoSt 2 a GiRL LOL”

I’d so get wasted right now if I hadn’t introduced that alcopops tax.

3. Missy Gerald - 24 June, 2010

I’m more excited that our new prime minister is an atheist than a woman.


4. GThornwood - 24 June, 2010

Early on last night as the “meeting” was unfolding and the flurry of tweets started, there were these gems:

@jeamland Richard Wilkins has just announced that Kevin Rudd has died during a leadership spill in New Zealand.

@stemcd Richard Wilkins is reporting that Julia Stiles has been elected Prime Minister of Australia.

It was absolutely fascinating to be a part of the twittersphere last night.

5. paralleldivergence - 24 June, 2010

Thanks Jason D, Missy and GThornwood! They’re excellent. I saw the Richard Wilkins ones last night and coffee came out my nose.

6. Jules Rules? « Kelli McGraw - 27 June, 2010

[…] evening of Wednesday the 23rd was a fascinating time to be part of the Twittersphere as possible, then definite news of the leadership spill was tracked and commented on by everyone […]

7. Troy - 27 June, 2010

I was saying to students that this could be our Whitlam moment…And those immortal words were spoken in 1975.

paralleldivergence - 27 June, 2010

Whoops! You’re right. 1975. I fixed it.
As for Rudd’s words written into history? Blb…bllb…bblb.

8. Liam - 3 July, 2010

I’ve never really thought about it, but I suppose Gough’s famous quote was kind of nonsensical. I guess many of us were so outraged at the time it didn’t have to make sense, but it hit the right chord. I was also only about 12 at the time.

Nonsensical or not; it was infinitely more memorable than Blb…bllb…bblb

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